by Steven Ertelt
June 30, 2005
Bentonville, AR (LifeNews.com) — The world’s largest retail chain is coming under fire from abortion advocates because it does not stock the morning after pill at any of its 3,000 locations. Wal-Mart operates more pharmacies in the United States than any other chain, but it will not stock the Plan B drugs, which sometime cause an abortion.
Wal-Mart spokeswoman Jacquie Young told the Associated Press that the retailer doesn’t carry the morning after pills for "business reasons." She declined to elaborate, but previous Wal-Mart representatives have said the decision is in response to customer concerns.
"We don’t carry a lot of products," she added.
That upsets abortion advocates like Ted Miller of NARAL.
"For many rural women, Wal-Mart is their only pharmacy," Miller says. "That’s what makes Wal-Mart’s refusal to carry emergency contraception so disconcerting."
NARAL and Planned Parenthood are targeting Wal-Mart and other pharmacy chains with a lobbying campaign seeking to get them to stock the drugs and to post a sign saying all legal prescriptions will be honored.
Like other pharmacy chains such as Walgreens, Rite-Aid and Winn-Dixie, Wal-Mart allows pharmacists not to dispense a drug that violates their moral and religious views. However, the retailer asks pharmacists to help customers find the morning after pill drugs at another location.
Walgreens spokeswoman Carol Hively told the Associated Press that not every store the company runs has the Plan B drugs either. She indicated it may not be stocked in places where demand is lower.
"That’s true of any prescription drug," she said.